Toddler Milestone 8

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Toddler Milestone 8[edit]

Please see Toddler Milestone 8 at the main Observant Mom website for the very latest about this milestone. Below was recent as of July 18, 2020

Toddler Milestone 8 – Inference and Deduction, Sequence of Events
Starts: 2 Years, 6 Months, +/-1 Week
Most Intense: 2 years, 6 months, 2 weeks until 2 years, 7 months
Ends: 2 years, 7 months, 2 weeks
Irritable Period Summary
• Starts out subtle at first: wants lovey or to cuddle, or may occasionally run up to you for a hug, or trots off occasionally and becomes inconsolable (a lovey may help)
• Noticeable change in head size and shape, several times over the course of the milestone, with more intense behavior following each change in head shape
• A desire to stay up until very late at night, talking
• Deliberately tells mistruths and often, e.g., Mommy is daddy, hides things and says lost them or that the missing item is “stuck”
• Loves to create dramatic little plays where someone or something needs helped or rescued and they do the rescuing
• Very jealous
• Bossy, e.g., about where you are allowed to sit
• Very specific about what shirt or pants to wear, requests that specific pant or shirt, e.g., the one with an airplane, even though you didn’t offer this choice
• Picky about the order of things, such as which sock to put on first, then next, then which shoe, etc.
• Refuses naps (won’t go to the bedroom, runs out of the room, etc.), even though very sleepy
• Defiant ALL day long to get a diaper change, take a nap, etc. This is, for many, a very frustrating milestone
• Wants your attention all day long, to see what they did or to sit with you.
• Loves to be messy and muddy
• Can be very dangerously clumsy, like they get super upset while on a changing table and almost fall over face first
• The irritating behaviors at this one can last all day long. They are very picky about a lot of things—no, THIS for lunch, no make a bottle with tap water not filtered water, no, I want to watch a show, no, Mom, you are not allowed to sit for more than 10 minutes. Sorry in advance.
• More likely to get sick
• Will not want to leave a fun activity, such as being at the playground or a bath
Most Intense Period
• Jealous and bossy about their primary caregiver, may hit or throw to separate primary caregiver from others, may not let primary caregiver move, wants caregiver all day long, gets clumsy and may fall off chairs, changing tables, etc., head first. Be careful when they are simply sitting on a chair even. A really big meltdown can be expected at or slightly after 2 years, 7 months, especially if you try to leave a place
New Abilities Summary
• The new abilities start at the very beginning of the irritable period. After the most intense period, the new abilities get turbo charged.
• In this one they match cause: effect and problems:solutions in an intellectual way. They are also capable of inference: of drawing a plausible conclusion given certain facts. Relying on this mental power related to this inference, they can compare and match past and current events. It is usually a 1:1 match, e.g., a hug to a crying child, a kiss to a boo boo, etc. They can rely on their past experiences and knowledge to apply a solution now and they can think in terms of things that happen across time. In the next milestone, they are more flexible in matching solutions to problems
Inference (and Resulting Imagination):
• Draws a plausible conclusion from facts (inference) like if the garage door opens, they guess “dad is home” or if their brother’s door is closed in the morning, they guess “my brother is sleeping”
• Can come up with a solution of their own, not presented to them, such as they are crying and you ask what can help them, offering maybe a drink or a toy, and they say, unexpectedly, “a kiss”
• May assign human qualities to their stuffed animals such as they are “sad” or told to “stay,” as if the stuffed animal will start to walk
• After the most intense period, their imaginative play becomes more complex: more characters, more plot twists, they execute the actions faster and more reliably
• Can identify themselves as “thinking”
1:1 Matching of problem to solution:
• There is a deductive matching of cause to effect at this one in which simple connections are made such as:
• Uses the word “because,” e.g., “I am not going to cry, because I am happy” This is a sequence of events, as intellectually understood by them, as something they said. I did this, because of this.
• Literally pushes buttons, e.g., pushes a button on a remote and finds it stops a movie and realizes what they did and mischievously laughs
• Beginning concern to solve problems/help others but without technical particulars and mostly emotionally comfort, e.g., a baby is crying and they say, “We need to help the baby!” Or consoles other children with a hug after hearing them cry
• Says “sorry” but only immediately after something went wrong
• If they get hurt, you now have to kiss the exact place that they got hurt; if they get dirty they may ask to take a bath
• More deliberate and exact in their fine motor control, e.g., may deliberately place fingers together
• More reliably stable and coordinated in their physical body, e.g., a lot less likely to fall back or on their side in the bath tub
• May want a particular caregiver at nursery
Continuity of Time:
• Understands “yesterday,” “today,” and “tomorrow”
• Understands sequences of events: “First this, then this” such as “I’ll be with you after I finish my drink” and they intently watch, waiting for you to be done
• Understands when they are done or finished with something by maybe saying “I’m finished” or wants to carry the doggie bag out of the restaurant, because they know they are done and that’s what you do or say “bye” at the end of something, every time they leave
• Keeps all the steps in their head as they work towards something. For instance, they insist on keeping the gate to a fence open, because they want to go get a rock in the yard (inside the gate) then go throw it in a pond (outside the gate)
• Uses their knowledge of steps to manipulate the process. For instance, they know they can give their siblings a hug before bedtime so they ask to go give the hug, which is a normal part of the routine to be expected and executed, then dart off to go play
• They know that they are never getting a fun moment back if they leave
• On the other hand, at times, seems more comfortable with separation, as if they understand they will reconvene with something or a person in the future
• More likely to understand instructions or a negotiation such as “We are first going to change your diaper then you can go back to [whatever]” and they understand it and submit to it willingly
• Beginning steps to sounding out letter sounds to read a word (letters in sequence make up a word)
• Loves a story in which something goes wrong in the past and it gets rectified such as a child lost a doll and they go back and get it. Peppa Pig and Paw Patrol are ideal for this
• Remembers past events and wants to talk about them again and again and again and again. A nonverbal child may show they know past events by manipulating the process. For instance, the night before you said “only one book” at night and that made them really upset so tonight they go out of their way to make sure two books are lined up
Applies solutions at correct time and place (beginning understanding of right and wrong):
• This is not that they execute what is asked of them through pressure or punishment, e.g., eat your dinner or else you don’t get cake. This is that they, on their own, apply a right or wrong solution to a life problem in a conscious, deliberate way. Such as:
• May know that when you get to a road you have to stop and look
• Likely shows up very playfully at first. They may get to a road and throw their hands up like “Oh no! A road! Whatever are we going to do!?” Or another playful way is they intentionally say the wrong answer to something, emphasizing that they know they can CHOOSE to be wrong, as applied to life
• Similarly seems to understand that an image that is drawn is just a drawn but does it playfully. If they see a cookie drawn on a paper, they may pretend to eat it, but it’s as if they know that’s wrong and they are doing a joke
• Exaggerates when something goes well maybe saying “Woo hoo!” and when things go poorly such as saying “Oh no!”
• Much more direct in knowing what they want, e.g., may take your hand and lead you directly to the playground down the street. This ability to know what they want and how to get it increases greatly after the most intense period at 2 years, 7 months and they become very confident and fast
• Follows some directions like “Can you take your pants off?”
• More reliably understands rules, e.g., they are unlikely to run into the road at any time now, if, say, on the driveway (It’s a relief, really!)

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